Detroit Mercy’s commencement ceremonies on the McNichols Campus for the School of Dentistry, School of Law, graduate and undergraduate students wrapped up May 11 and faculty, staff and leadership could not be more proud of our graduates. This year marked the first time that the University held separate ceremonies for the graduate and undergraduate programs.
During commencement ceremonies, Detroit Mercy conferred 1,473 degrees and certificates. There were 183 graduates for the School of Dentistry; 174 graduates for the School of Law; 427 for the graduate ceremony and 689 for the undergraduate McNichols programs. Rip Rapson, president of The Kresge Foundation, served as this year’s undergraduate ceremony speaker and presented a powerful set of remarks that highlighted the contributions of Detroit Mercy to our city.
In addition, the University presented the annual Vivere ex Missione Award to four graduating students. This award best exemplifies the University mission which reads “a Detroit Mercy education seeks to integrate the intellectual, spiritual, ethical and social development of our students.”
The honors went to:
• Undergraduate student Saamera Awali, a biology major, for her commitment to inclusiveness and the personal and intellectual growth she facilitates as a consultant at the University Writing Center, and her work with the Muslim Student Association.
• Graduate student Michelle D. Spring, who received a master of Health Services Administration degree, for her dedication to her field, her volunteer work that spans many interests and commitment to lifelong learning.
• Detroit Mercy Law graduate Kristoffer P. Butler, whose work on the issue of law student mental health is helping to destigmatize the depression, anxiety and other mental health issues common to many law students and for promoting the importance of diversity in the legal profession.
• Detroit Mercy Dental graduate Jonathan S. Zora, who serves as an oral health care ambassador to underserved Detroit communities, young people interested in careers in dentistry and as an educator for those who have already committed to the field.
Detroit Mercy would like to thank all of our students for choosing this University. Faculty, staff and senior leadership are deeply humbled and honored to have worked with you and now call you sons and daughters of Detroit Mercy.
You can also view the following speeches given by our speakers and valedictorian:
Rip Rapson, president, The Kresge Foundation
Valedictorian Mary Margaret Payne
Detroit Mercy President Antoine M. Garibaldi
Joseph G. Vernon ’05, principal and resident director, Miller Canfield’s Detroit office
Mark Murphy, ’81, lead faculty, Clinical Education at ProSumnus Sleep Technologies
Cassidy Briana Plough and Sarah Nicole Weingartz, class representatives, Dental Hygiene Class of 2019
Michelle Tra, president, Dental Class of 2019 and Patrick Anghel, vice president, Dental Class of 2019
Congratulations! We wish you great success in your life and career, and look forward to seeing you back on campus for alumni events in the very near future! #DetroitMercy2019